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sources of finance

Sources of finance for the Australian documentary slate (not including broadcaster-produced titles), 2007/08–2014/15

Next update March 2017

While industry sources (mainly broadcasters including the ABC and SBS) provide the majority of finance to the documentary slate – 67 per cent across the five years 2010/11 to 2014/15 – government funding underpins annual documentary activity, with Screen Australia contributing 14 per cent of finance (including 1 per cent through the Producer Equity Program, introduced in July 2011), the state agencies 5 per cent and the Producer Offset 15 per cent cashflowed in various ways.

Sources of finance for documentary slate

Graph: Sources of finance for the Australian documentary slate (not including broadcaster-produced titles), 2007/08�

Funding notes

2007/08–2008/09:
Extra funding was released by Screen Australia's predecessor agencies – Film Australia, the Film Finance Corporation Australia and the Australian Film Commission – as their accounts were wound up, which contributed to the higher number of funded titles starting production that year and the next. Returns from the one-off cashflowing of the Offset in 2007/08 were also funnelled back into production funding, further boosting production starts for Screen Australia documentaries in 2007/08 and 2008/09.

2009/10:
The timing of Screen Australia funding rounds had some impact on the number of titles going into production by 30 June 2010. An increase was anticipated in 2010/11, with many of the documentaries financed toward the end of 2009/10 starting production, including two high-budget Making History titles.

2011/12:
Administered by Screen Australia, the Producer Equity Program was introduced in July 2011. For low-budget documentaries (ie with budgets of $500,000 or less) the Producer Offset was replaced with a Producer Equity payment – a direct payment of funds to producers of eligible Australian documentaries, equal to 20 per cent of the approved budget. The program contributed 1 per cent of total funding in each of its three years in operation - 2011/12, 2012/13 and 2013/14.

$ million
Producer Offset Screen Australia1 State agencies Broadcasters
and other
2007/08 10 23 5 76
2008/09 13 20 5 60
2009/10 11 12 5 61
2010/11 18 16 5 82
2011/12 22 19 8 84
5-year average 15 18 6 72
2012/13 18 18 7 89
2013/14 19 17 5 90
2014/15 18 19 6 91

Notes:
Includes Screen Australia estimates.
Excludes inhouse productions by broadcasters.
Figures may not total exactly due to rounding.
1. Includes funding through the Producer Equity Program, which has contributed 1 per cent of total funding in each year since it was introduced in 2011/12.

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